Working Poor Essays

2028 Words Nov 18th, 2012 9 Pages
Minimum Wage and the Working Poor
HD 403 Poverty
Spring 2012

Introduction
It is believed one way to help the working poor is to increase the minimum wage to elevate their yearly income. But surveys and studies have shown that raising the minimum wage has done very little to help poverty rate. What it has done is eliminate jobs that the working poor filled and increased inflation. It seems to be an ineffective way to help the poor, a combination of other anti-poverty tools together would produce better results.

Issue Each president has wanted to help those in poverty and the working poor in America. President Clinton increased the federal minimum wage to bring up the wages of the working poor. Is that
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The objective was to reduce poverty or at least bring more people above the poverty line than there was below and improve their standards of living (Vedder and Gallaway, 2003). The federal minimum wage has been changed many times in the 1960’s and 1970’s but in the 1980’s and 90’s minimum wages varied by jobs, whether it was in retail or farm labor (US Dept. of Labor, n.d.).
Prevalence
The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWOR) of 1996 was to help resolve poverty for single mothers who are on welfare that will run out at some time (Burkhauser & Sabia, 2007). The problem that they ran into is that most of those working for minimum wage are in non-poor families, such as those teenagers who lives at home with parents, or the poor that were working earned more than the minimum wage already (Burkhauser, et al., 2007). In fact Neumark and Wascher (2002) has discovered that the higher the minimum wages are the lower the school enrollment is; kids are dropping out of school to work for the higher minimum wage. If the increase in minimum wage helps to give a raise the working poor then it will get them out of poverty. Also then they assume others lose their jobs because the increase in minimum wage has forced employers to reduce workforce then that will put someone into poverty (Neumark et al., 2002).
Impact on Families In 1996 the federal government passed legislation to raise the

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